While the wine industry continues to be somewhat controversial here in Lake County – with those for and against it – we have long been a supporter of our local grape growers and proud of the award-winning wines that the continue to produce. As such we certainly were happy to see a recent article in the San Francisco Chronicle that profiles legendary vineyard owner Andy Beckstoffer and his commitment to further developing our northern California wine country destination.
The article was written by Esther Mobley and published on January 21. Mobley writes of Beckstoffer’s firm belief in the quality and potential of Lake County’s Red Hills AVA, which is only about a 25 minute drive from our doors here at The Lodge at Blue Lakes. His 1,200 acre Amber Knolls vineyard is a beautiful landscape with elevations as high as 2,500 feet, which offer breathtaking views of nearby Mount Konocti, a now dormant volcano responsible for the rich volcanic soils that have Beckstoffer brimming with excitement.
In particular, he believes his Lake County vineyard has the potential to produce truly world-class Cabernet. To put his money where his mouth is, Beckstoffer is launching an interesting project the likes of which have never been seen in the wine industry. It’s part publicity stunt, but also part of his grand plan to make Amber Knolls an iconic Cabernet-producing vineyard on par with the best in the world. He’s giving ten acres of the vineyard away for free!
Mobley explains it this way: “Interested winemakers can submit resumes and cover letters to Beckstoffer. He will select 10 worthy candidates and will give each an acre’s worth of Cabernet, gratis, for three vintages. Each winemaker can select whichever acre block they’d like.”
Beckstoffer believes that if 10 different winemakers make 10 great wines, that’s proof enough in the greatness of the Amber Knolls land. Only time will tell, but for now we can say with certainty that you’ll find over 30 great wineries within 30 minutes of our location, so while Andy sets off to show the world how great our Lake County wines are, come for a visit in 2016 to find out for yourself!